The Cloud Castle – Page 36


The next challenge will be getting to Layla.

It is not possible to leap from the pillar forming the near wall of the lava pool to the pillar on which the Lorikeet maiden languishes, for the intervening Green Pipe, from which issues a steady rivulet of lava, leaves no room for leaping. Jack watches the flame jet belching from the mouth of the Green Pipe and realizes after a moment or two of observation that there is a distinct, predictable pattern to its cycle of bellowing fury and flickering half-life.

He braces himself, and when the flame has diminished to its lowest point – a condition that will last only seconds – he leaps, catching the top edge of the Green Pipe and hauling himself up – pulling his foot free of the flame jet’s path half a second before it blossoms again into life. Once atop the Green Pipe, he encounters the next obstacle, for the Green Pipe in the roof has begun to pour a greater volume of lava – perhaps in response to the damaged machinery below, and the lava is beginning to pool and trickle down the sides of the horizontal shaft. If the trickles are allowed to run around the sides of the horizontal shaft, they may well course directly over the captive Lorikeet maiden.

Does Jack have a SpidaShroom? If he does, turn to 148.
If not, turn to 86.